Mechanical Design Engineer (Contract)

First Mode

Seattle, WA, USA


Jan 4

First Mode draws on the exceptional talent and creativity of its multidisciplinary team to solve the toughest problems on and off the planet. We help companies, governments, and individuals from the earliest stages of problem definition to prototype creation and demonstration. A continual desire to discover and invent has led our team to drill into the unknown surface of Mars, electrify large industrial equipment, and apply remote sensing technologies to water conservation. 


While each project is unique, we typically meld together robotics, automation, systems engineering, modeling and simulation, and advanced fabrication to create a new future across many industries. If you have exceptional talent and a vision for the future, we want to talk.


First Mode is seeking to add members to its mechanical systems team who have strong capabilities for working these types of problems within a constrained, fast-paced environment. Applicants from all industries are welcome, with particular emphasis in mechanical systems developments from complex, multidisciplinary systems.  

Position Responsibilities

  • Represent the mechanical systems design team during the early definition and scoping phases of a development effort  
  • Research and develop mechanical system solutions designed to work within larger, multi-disciplinary systems  
  • Develop structures, mechanisms, and thermal system elements to solve customer challenges, and see these elements through build, test, integration, and operation  
  • Develop specifications for project partners or vendors, then assist in the management and delivery of these external efforts  

Basic Qualifications

  • 5+ years of experience
  • Experience with CAD in a cooperative, collaborative environment 
  • Experience creating piece part drawings and assembly drawings 
  • Demonstrate experience in life-cycle development of mechanical system hardware within a complex system or product 


Desired Qualifications

  • Proficiency in SolidWorks CAD tools
  • Use and proficiency in GD&T as applied per ASME drawing standards
  • Demonstrated understanding of mechanical systems fundamentals and applications of these to the design process
  • Experience routing in CAD
  • Solid mechanical and analytical skills
  • Experience converting scanned data into clearly detailed CAD models
  • Demonstrated proficiency in hands-on hardware design, prototyping, fabrications, and assembly
  • Experience in static, dynamic, and/or thermal analysis of mechanical systems
  • Experience in MATLAB, LabVIEW, Python, and wiki documentation
  • Ability to write and speak clearly about technical subject matter
  • Flexibility and responsiveness in a fast-paced, dynamic, small team environment


Position Details

  • This is a contract position for at minimum the duration of time as stated with the potential for conversion to full-time employment based on performance and business needs
  • Duration: 6 months
  • Location: First Mode's HQ in Seattle, WA (see below)


  • This position will be located at First Mode’s headquarters in Seattle, WA and will be required to work in office >60% of working hours


  • To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) you must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State. Learn more about the ITAR here.


First Mode is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with First Mode is governed on the basis of merit, competence and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.

Notice to First Mode job applicants: First Mode will never ask you to pay money or provide sensitive personal data to process a job application. If someone representing themselves as being associated with First Mode asks for any personal information as part of an application process, please report this immediately to 

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